Insomnia Catch All?

Any real tips for falling asleep that DON'T involve medications that have worked for you?

The only real thread I could find on it in the search bar was a med heavy discussion.

My evil puppy decided to walk all over my chest while I was deep in sleep, plod around several times until it got comfortable and settled in >:(

Now I'm fully awake in the middle of the night ><

I've been relying on Ambien lately in the face of my battles with disease and bureaucrats, so I'm damned curious for med-less suggestions, too. In fact, I'm awake right now! Splendid timing, Your Evilness.

Ouch, that sucks, guys. =( Only advice I have is a playlist I've built with songs that are mellow and specifically designed to lull me to sleep (mostly game soundtracks, too).

And I'm awake too, but it's half past noon.

Evil puppy!

I can't sleep either. How did I ever get up at 4:30am on purpose? This sucks.

Double post for extra awakeness.

Make sleeping the primary use of your bed.

Get the TV out of your bedroom.
Don't use back lit ereaders or handheld devices before bed.
If it has flashing lights, remove or cover it up.
No caffeine after noon.
Don't eat before going to bed.
Warm bath before bed.
Have the room you sleep in feel a bit cool, so you want to snuggle into blankets.
Good sheets. These have thread counts of at least 400 (I prefer around 800),
Comfortable pillows.

Mix & match
Good luck!

Does liquor count as a medication?

In my defense, I use exercise, too.

Everything Jen said plus routine; don't do the weekend/day off sleep in thing if you can avoid it and likewise avoid pulling all nighters before a day off. Altering your sleep schedule that drastically is kind of putting your body in a sort of jet lag mode. Instead giving your body some sense of routine to center it's circadian rhythm around will make getting up generally far easier (eventually) and also help you figure out how much sleep you actually need, when you normally feel tired, etc.

Learn to operate without sleep

I'll let you know if this ever starts working for me

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

Does liquor count as a medication?

In my defense, I use exercise, too.

Does Nyquil count as liquor?

Seriously though, exercise. When I'm training hard, I sleep like a baby. When I'm not, it's a toss-up.

Oh, I agree 100% with all that RedJen pointed out!! It hadn't occurred to me, because those are guidelines my parents always enforced. The only exception was reading (a real book) in bed. So yeah a bed is for sleeping (and perhaps some recreational activities ).

I use melatonin like an hour before I want to go to bed, it's pretty cool for sleeping.

Mex wrote:

I use melatonin like an hour before I want to go to bed, it's pretty cool for sleeping.

+1 Also, you get extra vivid dreams

Mex wrote:

I use melatonin like an hour before I want to go to bed, it's pretty cool for sleeping.

I heartily endorse this as well. And it's not really medication since melatonin is the natural sleep hormone your body produces anyway when it's tired.

Hello, longtime sufferer of insomnia here. It's been chronic and near debilitating going on, oh, 5 years or so.

It used to be melatonin helped me. No longer. I used Ambien to great effect for a long while. Fantastic dreams from that and 30 to 60 minutes of intoxication that my wife just loved. However it gradually lost its ability to keep me asleep through the night. Same with Ambien CR and a whole goddamn list of other meds. I currently take trazadone to sleep.

To make it worse, the extra weight I've put on has resulted in snoring and mild apnea. This led to unrestful sleep, even when I could stay asleep. I've since fashioned a Mandibular Advancement Splint (MAS) out of thermal plastic (InstaMorph) that has all but eliminated my breathing difficulties and snoring, so I find myself more rested these days than in the past several months. More rested, but not well-rested. I still find myself waking around 6am or 6:30am and unable to get back to sleep (I normally do not get up until 8:30).

For a while these recordings helped me in falling asleep:
http://cmhc.utexas.edu/mindbodylab.html

For mild insomnia, they are good for relaxing the mind, almost a form of auto-hypnosis.

Everything Jen, Krev, and Jonman said. You don't even need to exercise all that hard either. Just get the blood pumping for about 20 minutes 3-4 times a week. I would also like to add that having a healthy diet is a large bonus as well, as you will have more energy during the day that you can use to motivate you to exercise and just be generally more active so that you are more "wore out" at night.

Ambien is great fun. We used to get them in little baggies in Afghanistan from the fight doc (5 at a time). Hilarity ensued until we all figured out that 1/2 a pill was enough for sleeping through the regular shenanigans of any forward deployed base. Still it was a very fun couple of weeks egging each other on and messing with one another after shift. One of the very few times that I have fallen asleep while actively doing something.

Edit: oh and don't nap during the daytime and lay off the booze.

I'm doing ok right now, but considering the trazodone if my falling-asleep problems come back. My sleep hygiene is pretty darn good now so I've done what's possible on that end.

Hmm, seems like there is still a sprinkling of med suggestions in the thread.

To clarify, I am not a chronic sufferer of insomnia. I so happened to be awakened by evilpuppy one night and had difficulty falling asleep.

So I was asking for suggestions for acute insomnia.

Seems like a few miles on my treadmill while riding a Segway and flight goggles is in the future for me if I ever have need to fall asleep.

Keep the good suggestions coming!

Hey, you called it a catch-all, we're assisting the lurkers

Can the puppy be slightly less evil? That might help.

clover wrote:

Hey, you called it a catch-all, we're assisting the lurkers

Can the puppy be slightly less evil? That might help.

Fair enough.

And in regards to evilpuppy being less evil, sadly, he was concocted in the lab that way.

*sigh*

EvilShawnAndrich wrote:

Hmm, seems like there is still a sprinkling of med suggestions in the thread.

To clarify, I am not a chronic sufferer of insomnia. I so happened to be awakened by evilpuppy one night and had difficulty falling asleep.

So I was asking for suggestions for acute insomnia.

Seems like a few miles on my treadmill while riding a Segway and flight goggles is in the future for me if I ever have need to fall asleep.

Keep the good suggestions coming!

Check out the link I posted. Download the mp3s to an phone or mp3 player and play them when you have trouble sleeping.

In non-med options, this CD is failproof for me so far. I've never heard the last few tracks on it.

Usually I put this album in the playlist after it... I tend to wake up easily during the night so this seemed to improve that.

Waking up with something over/in my ears is really uncomfortable for me, otherwise these two albums would probably cure all my sleep issues.

Woke up about 5:30.

Grr.

Double grr.

Woke at 4:45am and fazed the agonizing choice of whether to try to get back to sleep on my own -- possibly facing exhaustion the whole day -- or take a half-pill and for certain be tired in the morning until it wears off.

ZOMG, rarely get jet lagged but recently had a very bad episode of it. Took me about 2 days to get adjusted back to California time.

Quick recap of my insomnia "cure" fails:
1) went jugging with evil puppy for a couple miles, didn't get sleepy after.
2) followed up with swimming many laps, didn't get sleepy.
3) Went on GWJ read/posted, didn't get sleepy.
4) drank my favorite non-caffeinated tea, didn't get sleepy.
5) Decided to bring out the big guns and loaded what I thought was going to be a boring monotone documentary on ants on youtube hoping it would lull me to sleep, turns out that it was interesting and I had to watch it all the way through. Not only did it not make me sleepy, browsed through the "more suggestions" after and ended up watching 2 more documentaries

><

Oh well, eventually fell asleep, LOL.

"What insomnia feels like"
IMAGE(http://i.imgur.com/j8CxbY6.jpg)